Toronto opening up – Toronto and Peel have been given the go-ahead by the province to open patios despite being in the Grey-Lockdown level of Ontario’s COVID-19 Response Framework: Keeping Ontario Safe and Open. Earlier this week both Toronto and Peel health officials recommended their respective regions remain in Grey-Lockdown but be allowed to resume outdoor dining and certain outdoor athletic ventures.
To support the province’s economic recovery, the government is cautiously adjusting dining capacity limits at restaurants, bars and other food and drink establishments, for regions in the Grey-Lockdown, Red-Control and Orange-Restrict levels of the Framework, effective Saturday, March 20, 2021 at 12:01 a.m.
While indoor dining continues to be prohibited for areas in the Grey-Lockdown level of the Framework, the province says outdoor dining would be permitted for regions in Grey-Lockdown, subject to physical distancing rules and a number of other public health and workplace safety measures.
For regions in the Orange-Restrict and Red-Control levels, capacity limits for indoor dining will be adjusted and based on a standard, scalable calculation that will allow for up to approximately 50 per cent of the indoor dining area to be accessible to the public, subject to physical distancing rules. The total occupancy cannot exceed 50 patrons in Red-Control and 100 patrons in Orange-Restrict.
The province’s decision to keep Toronto and Peel in Grey-Lockdown was made in consultation with the local medical officers of health and based on current trends, which have seen increasing case rates and per cent test positivity rates in the last week. The government will continue to work with the local medical officers of health to determine what targeted adjustments to public health measures may be made to allow for some outdoor activities where the risk of transmission is minimized.
Meanwhile, on the advice of the Chief Medical Officer of Health, the Ontario government is moving eight public health regions to new levels in the COVID-19 Response Framework: Keeping Ontario Safe and Open. Decisions were made in consultation with the local medical officers of health and are based on the trends in public health indicators and local context and conditions.
“With the significant and increasing risk of COVID-19 variants, the next few weeks will be critical in our fight against COVID-19,” said Christine Elliott, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health. “Thanks to the tireless efforts of our frontline health care workers we continue to accelerate our vaccine rollout, but until all Ontarians can receive the vaccine we must not let our guard down and continue following public health advice. This remains our best defense.”
Enough is enough come on Montreal!